Mail and Wire Fraud Conviction Appeals
Mail and Wire frauds fall under 18 U.S.C § 1341 and § 1343 of federal criminal offences in the United States. “Wire Fraud” is a vast term which refers to the misuse of any electronic communication between two or more states in an attempt to defraud the property of another. In other words, it is any form of financial fraud with the use of information technology or telecommunications. It could be a telemarketing fraud (use of telephone), radio or television signals, or phishing (use of email).
Some examples of wire fraud could include intentionally using telemarketing to sell a misrepresented product, gaining personal information through false pretenses with the motive of stealing money. It also includes several other federal crimes like racketeering, kickbacks, money laundering, and bribery.
What Is Mail and Wire Fraud?
Even though this list isn’t all inclusive, some other categories of fraud include health care fraud, securities fraud, and bank fraud. Federal mail fraud involves any mail sent either via public interstate postal services like USPS or private interstate postal service like FedEx, UPS, etc. The fraud qualifies as “Interstate” if the wire or mail has arrived from a different state than the state received.
To convict or accuse an individual of wire fraud, actual transactions need not be completed. The only requirements to prove the crime are evidence that you:
- Had an intention to defraud;
- Undertook a plan to defraud; and
- Attempted fraud using electronic communications.
Federal Criminal Appeals Lawyers Defending Convictions under Wire and Mail Fraud
If under U.S.C. § 1341 or § 1343, you are accused or convicted of mail or wire fraud then it is important for you to discuss your options of appeal with an experienced criminal lawyer as soon as possible. The fines or punishments for the offence of mail or wire fraud could be extremely severe or even improperly imposed. Your appeal can be handled efficiently at every step by the knowledgeable and experienced federal criminal lawyers at our firm. Return to our main federal crime appeals page.
U.S. Sentencing Guidelines under 2B1.1
Mail and Wire fraud offences can be severely punishable and can have penalties like probation, heavy fines and jail time. In usual cases, a convict can face upto 20 years of jail sentence along with fines of hundreds of thousands of dollars. This sentence can also increase based on other factors like the criminal history of the defendant and the severity of the wire or mail fraud offence. Under 2B1.1(b)(1), if the financial loss crosses $5000, the loss increment increases as the offence level increases. Similarly, if the number of victims involved increases, the level of offence rises as well. It is ordinary for any judge to increase the penalties imposed on the convicts.
Our federal criminal lawyers have vast knowledge on the sentencing guidelines and can point out and rectify if the sentence was inappropriately imposed. You might be able to appeal if you feel that the sentencing by the judge is unjust in proportion to the offence under mail and wire fraud.
Causes of Penalty Enhancements:
§ 2B1.1(b)(1): Amount of Financial Loss
Section 2B1.1(b)(1) of the Federal Guidelines Manual lists down the proportionate offence levels for the financial losses in wire or mail fraud offences. The offence level rises by 2 if the loss exceeds $5000; the offence level rises by 4 if the loss crosses $10,000; the offence level rises by 6 if the loss exceeds $30,000 and so on. The increments continue to increase until it reaches $400,000 which would require the offence level to rise by 30.
§ 2B1.1(b)(2): Number of Victims
The number of victims affected by the offence is also a significant factor that could lead to an enhanced penalty. If the mail or wire fraud crime has 10 or more victims the rise in the offence level begins. There is an increase of 2 levels in the sentence imposed if the victims involved are 10 or more than 10. An offence involving more than 50 victims increases the sentence of the offence by 4 levels and an offence including more than 250 victims has the sentence increased by 6 levels.
Financial Institution Defraud
When the accused is convicted of defrauding a financial institution using wire or mail communication, he/she can be sentenced to upto 30 years in prison and a fine of $1,000,000. A financial institution can be defined as any establishment that performs financial transactions like deposits, loans and investments. The offence level automatically increases by 4 levels if you defrauded any financial institution.
Defending Wire and Mail Fraud Offenses
Scheme to Defraud
The communication through wire or mail must determine the accused individual’s scheme to defraud the complainant by obtaining money or property. A “scheme to defraud” can be defined as a plan to participate in defrauding another party. During trial, the prosecution is not required to prove that a scheme to defraud was actually performed. Instead, the prosecutor only has to prove that the accused had the ability and intention of carrying out the said scheme. Thus, it becomes easier for the government to convict the accused of wire or mail fraud.
Mail and Wire Fraud: Property, Money or Honest Services
Along with protecting tangible property rights, the language of the wire and mail fraud laws (18 U.S.C. § 1341, 1343) also protect intangible property rights. There is an ambiguous history attached to the language of the law concerned with intangible property rights. Nevertheless, it can be clearly stated that the intangible rights are inapplicable if they do not prove to be beneficial to the victims of the wire or mail fraud offence.
Mail and Wire Fraud: Abetting and Aiding, Conspiracy and Attempt
The same penalties as the person who committed the crime are faced by any defendant who conspired to commit wire or mail fraud, abets in the commission of wire or mail fraud or attempts at committing a wire or mail fraud. To prove the conspiracy of committing a wire or mail fraud, the prosecution has to establish:
- An agreement was made between 2 or more people to a scheme to defraud, and
- The accused agreed to the scheme willingly with a motive of contributing to its fraudulent purposes.
Substantial Fines of Mail or Wire fraud
Mail and Wire fraud offences fall under white collar crimes with severe punishments. If you have been convicted for wire or mail fraud, you could either face a fine or 20 years imprisonment or both. In case you have been convicted for committing fraud against a financial institution you could either face a fine of $1,000,000 or prison term of 30 years or both. Looking at the extremity of these penalties, it is necessary to speak to a criminal appeals lawyer to know all the options and prospects of appeal.
Federal Criminal Appeals and Appealable Issues
Every case of mail or wire fraud differs from the other on the bases of the set of facts involved. These offences carry multiple underlying issues like several other appeals. Some of the appealable matters include: whether there was existence of a scheme to defraud, whether the important elements of the crime have enough evidence to prove them, whether there was enough communication through mail or wire, whether the accused had the motive to indulge in such an offence or whether the intent of the scheme was to procure property or money.
It is crucial to inspect the decision of the lower court in mail and wire fraud cases since the occurrence of common errors could lead to the disruption of the defendant’s constitutional right to due process. The defendant is often deprived of his/her constitutional rights due to certain errors during the trial, pre-trial or sentencing. This could severely affect the judgment of the case. One should be aware of their rights before they are taken away.
If handled skillfully, life-changing results can be delivered by filing a wire and mail federal appeal, even though it could be a complex process. In order to be aware and informed at every step of the trial, it is very important to consult a federal criminal appeals lawyer who is experienced and knowledgeable. We offer transparency and involvement to the clients so that they are aware and informed of their federal mail and wire appeal.
The most crucial advantage that an accused of wire fraud has is that the government has to prove the motive in order to prove you guilty of the offence. In other words, a wire fraud cannot be committed accidently. By proving good faith from your side, we can build a strong defence against the given charges by following the attorney’s advice or solving customer dissatisfaction. Brownstone Law could also prove that you were not making any false claims about the product or demonstrate lack of financial motive in order to refute the charges.
The circumstances and the situation of the case would be thoroughly discussed and investigated by our expert team of federal criminal attorneys, followed by explanation of all your possible options. In addition to this they will handle all of the prerequisites and the preparation involved for a pre-trial resolution. Even if your case goes to trial (either by your will or the will of the judges), the attorneys will assertively defend your rights and interests throughout the entire case.
If you have been pronounced guilty of a wire or mail fraud and wish to appeal to the federal court, contact our office at 1-888-233-8895 for a free consultation. We will discuss your case details and guide you on the steps to proceed for your federal mail and wire appeal.
Federal Criminal Appeals Lawyers to defend Mail and Wire Fraud
If you have been severely due to conviction for a wire or mail fraud, immediately appoint a skilled federal criminal appeals attorney for post-conviction legal aid. Our federal criminal appeals lawyers have years of experience in defending all forms of federal criminal appeals like mail and wire fraud. All our federal criminal appeals attorneys are registered in all the Circuit Courts throughout the United States and the Supreme Court of United States.
Our federal criminal appeals lawyers inspect the facts of the trial to look for errors and violations of constitutional rights which form the basis of a strong federal criminal appeal and help in making it successful. This is followed by making the most important and effective instrument of any federal mail and wire appeal known as the “appellate brief”. The next step is to present the defence argument to the panel of judges in a persuasive and assertive manner to help convince the judges that there has been a violation of your rights. Winning a federal criminal appeal requires hiring the right lawyer as the first step. Not only this, we can also help you to seek aid by appealing your mail and wire fraud conviction.
We can Help
Brownstone Law firm has extremely experienced and knowledgeable federal appellate attorneys. Our federal mail and wire appeals attorneys are hired by clients from across the United States to represent their case before an appellate federal court in the country. We can professionally handle your Federal appeals and are certified in every Appellate Federal court. The federal appeal lawyers at our firm handle both Federal Criminal Appeals and Federal Civil Appeals.
Connect with Robert Sirianni our federal appellate attorney at (888) 233-8895.
Your case will be reviewed by our firm’s federal appeal lawyers and they would provide you with the appropriate legal strategy and suggestions on how to proceed with your case. Get a free consultation at Brownstone Law firm by contacting our federal appeals lawyers at 1-888-233-8895. We are experienced in all appellate federal circuit courts and we represent clients in all federal circuit courts of appeal throughout the nation. Contact our firm now to discuss your conviction or post-conviction appeal by completing the contact form.